Monday, July 22, 2024

How Network Monitoring is Used by Brussels Metro, MKI, Philadelphia, Options, and Pickens County School District: Case Studies

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Network monitoring solutions improve network efficiency and guide effective allocation of resources. Modern solutions leverage artificial intelligence (AI) and software-defined wide area networks (SD-WANs) to automate the rapid deployment of resources across vast physical distances with granular control of segmentation and security.

The case studies below show how five different organizations use network monitoring to their advantage:

1. Brussels Metro

The city of Brussels’ Metro services 1.14 million residents of the Belgian capital with more than 850,000 daily rides via subway, tram, and bus. The number of riders has been growing exponentially, and at peak usage, demands surpassed the Metro’s capacity to manually control operations.

Switching to Extreme Networks’ solutions fully converged the legacy wired and wireless networks. This convergence improved monitoring and fully automated the provisioning and allocation of resources. Improved monitoring, made possible by the new systems, enable both automated and manual adjustments to the network to improve system uptime, deliver secure guest BYOD access services, and allow the system to scale as demand grows.

Industry: Transportation

Network monitoring provider: Extreme Networks


  • Supports real-time virtual machine mobility
  • Networks 15,000 IP video surveillance cameras
  • Real-time control of metro traffic
  • Elimination of overlaid wired and wireless networks

Read the Brussels Metro and Extreme Networks case study.

2. MKI 

Mitsui Knowledge Industry (MKI) provides IT services to more than 45,000 employees across various MKI divisions as well as other customers worldwide. MKI recently overhauled its internal network to support more than 8,000 users with an emphasis on granular security and a heavy use of video conferencing.

“The new network needs to have a high degree of flexibility, scalability, and security to accommodate all types of service requirements,” says Yasuhiro Nishiyori, MKI’s sales department leader. “For example, not to mention the accessibility to cloud services, the new network will need to accommodate a hundred times more devices than the current number of employees.”

Cisco’s networking tools permit precise and flexible visualization of network traffic and bandwidth control. MKI monitors the network not only at the branch office level, but also per application and per user. Simple steps within Cisco’s dashboard establish policies at all levels to automatically segment devices and control access.

Industry: Technical Services

Network monitoring provider: Cisco


  • Application-specific traffic control minimizes packet delays
  • Improves flexibility to support remote work
  • Increases bandwidth to permit switching from audio conferences to resource-heavy video conferencing
  • Integrates multiple WAN networks and cloud-based resources using SD-WAN

Read the full case study on MKI and Cisco.

3. Options

Options provides cloud services to traders in the financial sector and transmits data powering billions of dollars in trades. A daily data transfer rate of 400 TB challenges the infrastructure limits, but Options’ clients demand minimal delays to support their high-frequency trading and similar time-sensitive applications.

“With growing traffic volumes, both from organic growth and market data volume increases, we were starting to detect more issues on our network architecture with packets dropping and levels of latency that we felt were unacceptable,” says Aaron White, global head of networks for Options.

Upgrading to Arista Networks’ monitoring solutions allows Options to detect and make adjustments to counter forecasted network congestion events by adjusting administrative and application workflows in real time.

Industry: IT, finance

Network monitoring provider: Arista Networks


  • Latency reduced as much as 4,000%
  • Huge reduction in computing, power consumption, and cooling costs
  • Packet loss effectively eliminated
  • Improved visibility into performance and utilization

Read more about Options and Arista.

4. City of Philadelphia

The city of Philadelphia provides public services and maintains infrastructure for 1.5 million residents. The number of devices supported by the network continues to rapidly expand and now includes IoT devices, such as video surveillance cameras, gunshot detection sensors, and as many as 100,000 smart LED streetlights.

“Being a Juniper shop makes my life and my team’s lives easier. We run a network that supports 30,000 employees with four people,” says Dennis Doyne, chief network operations officer for the city of Philadelphia.

Juniper Network solutions simplify management and monitor the city’s network to improve the dependability and security. The network managers establish policies for users, and the network uses those policies to perform automated threat remediation and micro-segmentation across all connected devices.

Industry: Government

Network monitoring provider: Juniper Networks


  • 99.99% availability for 30,000 city workers plus IoT
  • Secures device-independent BYOD connections for remote users
  • Incorporates edge and cloud architecture to replace legacy VPN technology.

Read more about the city of Philadelphia and Juniper Networks.

5. School District of Pickens County

The School District of Pickens County (SDPC) in South Carolina services more than 16,000 students and 2,000 employees over 32 different sites. As COVID-19 measures shut down in-person education, the SDPC’s small IT team was faced with a difficult transition.

“It was hard being short-staffed during the pandemic. PRTG [Paessler Router Traffic Grapher] helped because no matter where we were, we knew where the problems were without waiting for the schools to call us, and our technical support were able to help,” says John Anderson, director of technology services for the School District of Pickens County.

The SDPC team used the network monitoring to catch and resolve a variety of connection and network issues before users could notice the issues. The advanced warning enables quick resolution of issues, so the team can also support the development of systems for student testing and other district needs.

Industry: Education

Network Monitoring Provider: Paessler


  • Enabled rapid transition to remote education
  • Proactive tech support resolves network issues before users notice them
  • Supports 2,600 network sensors to improve syslog capability

Read the full SDPC and Paessler case study.

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